This article contains detailed information on how to write an application letter for a job in 2020. It also contains Job templates and examples. Before I proceed. Not everyone job seeker understands what an application letter truly is. Often, an application letter is referred to as a cover letter. The question is, is that correct? No.
What is a job application letter?
An application letter is a document you submit to a potential employer to indicate your interest in an open position in the hiring organization. It can pass as a standalone document which does not require the attachment of any other document such as a CV.
The job application letter explains who you are as a professional and an individual. The letter should highlight your skills and achievements. The aim of this is to help get the attention of the hiring manager. When written well, this letter explains to the reader why they should ask you in for an interview and highlights the key qualifications that makes you qualified for the role.
Cover letters and application letters have separate functions. A cover letter is usually sent alongside a resume and summarizes the job seekers’ experience relevant to the position they are applying for. It sometimes includes how the applicant came to learn about the position and why she wants to be employed in that particular organization.
Cover letters are usually shorter than application letters because it is meant to give the reader a glimpse about the job seeker. A cover letter is written in a way that the recruiter will be compelled to go through other documents attached with the cover letter. Cover letters are mostly sent through mails, unlike application letters.
Occasionally, employers prefer to receive an application letter for an open position instead of a resume and cover letter.
Having gotten a background understanding of what an application letter is and why it is different from a cover letter, you should also understand that you don’t just write an application letter without taking your time, else you will end up not getting a good result. Thus, have it in mind that there are different stages of writing an application letter.
First step is the preparation step, followed by the main writing and lastly the finishing. Though there are different evolving methods of writing an application letter, I will try as much as possible to stick to an understandable, common and unique way.
Below are ways to write a catchy and effective job application letter.
- Review information about the company and position
- Use a professional format
- Create the heading
- Address the letter to the hiring manager
- Open the letter by describing your interest
- Outline your experience and qualifications
- Express appreciation
- Close the letter
1. REVIEW INFORMATION ABOUT THE COMPANY AND POSITION
The first step to write a good job application letter is to review the information about the company.
Spend some time reviewing the company’s information as well as the job position. This, you can likely find on the website.
Compare your qualifications and experience with the list of skills in that posting. You may also want to think about specific experiences that have prepared you for the role.
While or after reviewing, compare the job requirements to the skills you have and take note of key skills that fits into the requirements well. This may choose to write them down. This will enable you to provide the most important information in your letter quickly and effectively.
2. USE A PROFESSIONAL FORMAT
Years back, application letters had a specific format. This format included having the writer and recipients address written in opposite sides of the paper, etc. These days writing formats are changing but the information remains the same.
A typed application letter usually have a given format such as single spacing, one-inch margins and left alignment, the use of professional fonts like font, such as Times New Roman, font size from 10 to 12 points.
Before you begin your letter, make sure that you have the proper letterhead. Use a formal business heading for your job application letter. The heading usually contains the writer’s and recipient’s details.
This includes your contact information:
- Phone number
- Email address
- Your physical address
- Your phone number
If you are required to send your job application letter via email, you can remove your name and contact information from the header and put it at the bottom of the email after the signature instead.
After you must have included your information, you need to include the company’s details. This includes the name of the employer to whom you are applying for the job, their title, the name of company and address.
Many times, the name of the employer may not be none. In this case you can use only the title on the recruiter. Examples;
The hiring Manager The Director The Chief Executive Officer, etc.
By including the contact information of the company to which you are applying, you are showing that you have taken the time to write the application to the company, and have done your research to find the hiring manager for the position and this gives you an edge over an applicant who did not include the company’s details.
When a hiring manager reviews your job application letter, they will get their first impression of you as a potential employee. So, take time to format and edit your letter professionally.
3. ADDRESS YOUR LETTER TO THE PERSON WHOM YOU ARE WRITING
This stage marks the official start of your letter. Here you have to be as formal and professional as possible. To be on a safer side, avoid the name of the recipient even if you know, but avoid by all means, the use of “To whom it may concern. Rather, use words such;
Dear Hiring Manager
4. OPEN THE LETTER BY DESCRIBING YOUR INTEREST
In the first paragraph of your letter, mention the job title which you’re applying for.
This can be followed by where you saw the job advert. Include your interest in the role and briefly state the main experience or qualification you have that makes you a good fit. This is the section that will capture the attention of the hiring manager as the reader of your application letter, so it is important to appeal to that person quickly without beating around the bush.
Example: I saw the posting for the Marketing Intern role on my university’s online job board and I am very interested in the position. I am in my final year of earning my bachelors degree in marketing with a minor in communication and language, so I feel my educational experience has prepared me to work in a fast-growing marketing department like the one within your organization.
5. GET DOWN TO THE BODY OF THE LETTER
After the first paragraph, the body of the letter is where you have the opportunity to sell yourself the the reader. Here, you should do the following:
Briefly summarize your strengths, qualifications and experience.
You might want to discuss briefly about your qualifications, skills and experiences to show why youre perfect for the role.This must be positioned in a way that it aligns with the company’s goals. In the case where your CV is attached, refer to your CV or resume, and your skills section from your outline for more explanations of your qualifications and skills.
Endeavour to include the most relevant aspects of your career and things you have been able to accomplish, both past and present. You want to show the hiring manager who the person behind the accomplishments is, so paint a picture of yourself in a way that the reader will get a mental picture of what was written. Ensure you do not lie while doing this.
Before you conclude your letter, express your appreciation to the hiring manager for reviewing your letter and considering you for the position. You must realise that it is a privilege for the reader to have taken time to go through your letter. This is something he may not do for every application.
Thus, expressing your gratitude for that time spent is a polite and professional way to end this part.
Example: “I appreciate the time you have taken to review my application letter. Since there is every a high probability that you received a number of application letters for this open position, I am extremely grateful for the time you have spent reading about me and what would make me a good candidate for this role. I’m look forward to getting a positive response from you”
6. CLOSE THE LETTER
Most times, many people prefer to close an application letter with words such as;
Sincerely, Best regards, Truly,etc. This is not a bad idea. Any professional way to conclude is acceptable. However, the last line should carry your full name.
If you are submitting a hard copy of the letter, include your signature above your name but when submitting an application letter via email, you should include your contact information beneath your name, rather than including it in the header.
Writing an application letter for a job isn’t so difficult if the format is properly understood.
Every job seeker should be able to write a standard application letter because chances of getting a job is dependent on the application letter. As a way of making this seemingly difficult task easy, the article has broken it down in the simplest terms.
Application letters have the same requirements. The only difference lies on how the letter will be sent. This is to say that the format of your job application letter depends on how you are sending it to the hiring manager.
If you plan to send the application letter via email the formatting will differ from a printed or handwritten letter. When emailing a job application letter, it is also important to consider what subject line to use to make sure the hiring manager will be compelled to open the email and read your letter.
The subject line is the first thing the hiring manager will see while scanning the inbox. His willingness to either read or delete the message is dependent on the subject line. Your subject line makes the first impression.
When sending a job application email, it is important to include the title of the job into which you are inquiring or for which you are applying.
An application letter is your opportunity to sell yourself as a perfect candidate for the open position. Use this opportunity to the fullest and don’t mess it up.
When preparing a job application letter, follow these tips to make sure your letter includes the information a hiring manager needs.
To conclude, below are application samples and templates to help you to further understand this article.
Sharon Thompsom 11 South Street Harbor View, Maine 04005 555-555-5555 firstname.lastname@example.org September 10, 2020.
Jim Anderson Human Resources Director Avery Solutions, Inc. 700 Commerce Way Harbor View, Maine 04005
Dear Hiring Manager, I am writing in regard to your newspaper advertisement concerning your need for a…... I am writing to apply for the position / job advertised. I am writing to you in response to your advertisement for the position of… I would like to be considered for the position of… As for my work experience, I have been… I would like to point out... / ...and believe I possess the right combination of....skills. I believe that I have the qualifications, experience and enthusiasm that you are looking for. My unique mix of previous work experience and my status as a Stetson University student in …., make me an ideal candidate for … My experience in …., combined with my courses in … have convinced me that … is a career option I would like to explore. I have the maturity, skills, and abilities to embark on a career in …, and I'd like to do this in .... Your company has an excellent reputation for customer satisfaction, and I know that the combination of my experience, education and motivation to excel will make me an asset to your marketing department. I am confident that I possess all the necessary qualifications for the position… Perhaps I am the "multi-talented …."you seek in your advertisement in … . I'm versatile …I have the solid … experience you specify as well as the strong computer skills you desire. My outgoing personality, my experience as…, and my recently completed education make me a strong candidate for a position as ….. When I read your advertisement for a …on …, I couldn't help noticing how well your requirements align with my experience, education, skills, and background. Your advertisement on … for a … fits my experience and qualifications perfectly, and I am writing to express my interest in and enthusiasm for the position. I believe my broad-based scientific knowledge / educational background in …/ leadership skills / and writing skills make me an excellent candidate for this position will enable me to make a strong contribution to your company. Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to review this letter. I will be looking forward to hearing from you soon.
Best wishes, Sharon Thompson.